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Hi friends! Today, for your reading pleasure, I share two quick reviews from Lanre Shonoiki. Have fun and kindly let me know what you think about these two movies by dropping a note. Have fun!

Reviewer:  Lanre Shonoiki

AVATAR (Written and Directed by James Cameron)

A dearth of Oscar nominations notwithstanding, Avatar is a family favourite any day. An entrancing story of a paraplegic war veteran (Jake Sulley), called up to replace his domestically murdered soldier twin brother in a special team stationed on a newly discovered, unsophisticated planet – Pandora. He finds himself on an espionage of some sorts when he gets assigned a tele-connected likeness (Avatar) of the Pandora natives; the Na’vi. Learning their ways, gaining their trust and obtaining secrets key to his superiors’ goals of exploiting mineral resources on Pandora were Sulley’s mission objectives until he fell in love with the heiress of the Na’vi. Torn between being a good German, protecting an innocent race from pillage and staying in a body where he has found love and new legs, Sulley makes the fairer choice, equips the Na’vi with the arms required to help them fight fair, and leads their defense against assault from the humans.

James Cameron’s near perfect writing and directing of this movie has critics yet unconvinced. Many have drawn on the similarity of the Avatar plot to the Pocahontas story (even stressing the consonant J.S. initials of the lead males in both stories), condemning the film as commonplace and unoriginal. But all movies tell stories of experiences already heard of by all someplace, somehow. So, just maybe the quality of movies should be judged on how well the audience is taken in. Avatar steals all hearts here with realistic 3-D effects, lovely soundtracks and just enough emotional intrusion to get the viewer involved. You really should see it if you haven’t… I bet someone already told you that.

2012 (Written by Roland Emmerich and Harald Kloser; Directed by Roland Emmerich)

John Cusack in "2012"

Making movies about cataclysms sure took a new turn here. Unlike precedents such as War of the Worlds and The day After tomorrow, 2012 is much more down-to-earth (literally and figuratively) in tying the causes of the planetary shakedowns it depicts to theories that aren’t too far-fetched. Subtectonic forces resulting from nucleo-gravitational imbalance between the sun and the earth practically bring the world as we know it to an end. Ace geologist, Adrian Helmsley (played by Chiwetel Ejiofor) gets warned early by a friend in India and passes the threat up the executive ladder for further work to be carried out on averting the woe. Alas, projections made are not quite on point and disaster strikes earlier than expected. Consequential events are so powerful they tear continents apart, flood the highest mountains, re-unite a hitherto broken home, claim the life of the American President and even send multi-billionaires with pre-arranged escape plans struggling with the helpless but determined masses to claim pre-booked slots on specially constructed survival units called “Arks”. Roland Emmerich puts to best use the bottleneck excitement at the Ark-boarding points, John Cussack’s endearing face, impressive devastation effects, unforgettable characters (the big-mouthed Russian kahuna and Charlie the crazy journalist) and bits of gallows humour here and there. On the whole, 2012 is a blockbuster that shocks the world into initial confusion and final submission, making December 12, 2012 the one day the world would never forget without having even lived it yet.

*Photo credit: http://2012-movie-trailer.blogspot.com

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